If scholarship were based solely on quality, Pamela would have been lost to the ages a long time ago (and good riddance), but unfortunately for me, scholarship is also based on influence, and this stupid book, despite being extremely poorly written, repetitive, and didactic in all the wrong ways, is one of the foundation texts of English Literature. For a hundred years afterwards, you were either a Pamelist or Anti-Pamelist. (I would have been an Anti-Pamelist.)
Are you ready for this? Here is the entire book:
Pamela: I am virtuous and noble and also beautiful! Leave me alone!
Mr. B: But you are so young and beautiful, I must have you!
Pamela: I would rather die than be ruined!
Mr. B: THAT MAKES ME WANT YOU MORE!
Pamela: I WOULD RATHER DIE!!!!!!!
Mr. B: If you get any more beautiful and desirable and unattainable, I don't know if I will be able to refrain from raping you, and that makes me cranky.
Pamela: I am an important symbol of class and gender inequality!
Mr. B: So, do you want to get married and stuff?
No joke, you guys. And the second volume, a sequel Richardson wrote after the public went insane, isn't even worth mentioning, it's so godawful boring.